In this essay, I intend to investigate how an album sounds 'of its time'. The album I have chosen to study is 'The Doors' by The Doors and to do so I will analyse the melodies, harmonies, instrumentation, production and arrangement of the album.
The late 1960's brought about a major change in popular music partially caused by the emergence of the drug scene. Acid and psychedelic rock both became hugely popular due to their association to it. The increased use of LSD in particular amongst musicians caused them to write songs with the intent of describing the 'trips' they had experienced while on the drug. The drug was believed to expand mind and in some cases provide spiritual revelations. These beliefs were promoted by the Harvard psychologists Timothy Leary and Richard Alpert in their manual for mind expansion: 'A Psychedelic Experience'.
'Among the commonest of the 'altered states' induced by LSD is a depersonalisation or 'ego-loss'...as
the use of LSD spread under Leary's influence, a trail of 'acid casualties' followed in its wake...[including] some of the most sensitive and talented people in pop.'
McDonald, I. (1994:2/3)
'Hang on to your ego
Hang on but I know that you're gonna lose the plot'
'They trip through the day and waste all their thoughts at night
But how can I say it
How can I come on when I know I'm guilty?'
The Beach Boys Hold On To Your Ego (Track 1 on enclosed CD)
Another important cause of the musical revolution was the overwhelming popularity of the hippy movement, which consequently produced an increase in folk-style music and the increased use of social and political meaning behind the lyrics of many songs. Issues such as the Vietnam War and Communism began to awaken the minds of the youth culture...